Review: Beast by Ollie Doherty

Hi and welcome to the reading world!

Today’s post is a bonus one for the week in addition to my normal Tuesday/Thursday posting, but I wanted to share a review of Beast by Ollie Doherty during its new release month!

Beast by Ollie Doherty
Published: July 1, 2021
Format Read: E-book
Source; Received a copy from the author for an honest review

Beast is the first book in a new fantasy series that follows multiple perspectives and features LGBTQIA+ representation, a mystery, a secret order of assassins, political intrigue, romance, and more.

The book itself has a lot of world building in ways that aren’t huge sections of exposition but more so drop the reader into the world and give tidbits along the way to build up the setting. This isn’t a favorite for every reader, but I personally liked getting to see the world unfold alongside the story. There are scenes that do feature more informative sections of what the world is like and the backgrounds of the characters, but these fit well within the context of the story.

The story’s pacing takes awhile to get into, as can often be the case with first books in fantasy where world building and storyline introductions are being set up. However, this story does emphasize tension and atmospheric suspense and mystery even in the first two thirds where it’s much more build up. The final third is where a lot of the action does occur and there’s payoff for the stories that have been set up. There were plot twists I didn’t see coming, and the rest of this series will definitely have some major events that have kicked off in the first novel.

Overall, the multiple perspectives were written well and each felt distinct. Damia’s was probably my personal favorite to follow, as her character had stakes in both the mysterious order of assassin’s world, the trading and merchant stories that featured into the story frequently, and the political intrigue. Silva’s took some more time for me to get into but was still a solid storyline. I think overall my least favorite was Julan’s narration mostly because his character is still very much one I think is going to develop with the series. Each storyline and narration was unique, and set up some big questions for how the series will develop.

I think Beast is a story that has some good world building and still has moments where the reader isn’t fully aware of the scope and everything going on which can be built out in subsequent books. The characters overall were interesting, but I think will also definitely grow and have more depth with the next installment. Finally, I think this is a fantasy book that has some romance, but is definitely lighter on the romance and much more emphasis is placed on the mystery and suspenseful elements within this fantasy world. I think if you enjoy suspense and intrigue in your fantasy as well as stories that feature trade and political elements, this could be one you would enjoy!

As noted above, I received a free e-copy of Beast in exchange for an honest review. The book is currently available for purchase on the author’s website. Thank you again to Ollie Doherty for providing a copy of this to review!

Try this one if you like: political fantasy with merchant/trade themes, if you enjoyed the His Fair Assassin trilogy’s secret order of assassins (please note that series was YA and this is adult fantasy), if you enjoy mystery and suspense plots in fantasy

Thank you so much for stopping by!

-Rae

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